Blue Line Studios, Bournemouth


What’s this? An e-mail inviting me to a secret gig, very intriguing as I have not been to any of these in a very long time – with social media these have all but disappeared.

The e-mail came through at the start of the week and said the venue which is somewhere in Bournemouth will be revealed just a day before the event. The band involved are a new 3 piece called “Violetic” who were formed when Mitch Johns (Mutant Vinyl) and Rory Dickinson (Near Light) met up with drummer Chrisy Lopez. The venue was finally revealed as “Blue Line Studios” which is just off the triangle near to the centre of Bournemouth.

The Plastic Dots
The Plastic Dots 12

On arrival it seemed just like a crowded house full of people having a party as there were deafening sounds coming from a DJ set up in one of the rooms. At 9pm sharp the music stopped to make way for the support band who were set up in a room not much bigger than most peoples front rooms. The place was packed and the atmosphere was one of pure electric anticipation. “The Plastic Dots” who were formerly known as “Vlad” arrive on stage to a great welcome from the excited crowd. The Bournemouth three piece feature Ben Lowe (Guitar/Vocals), Alfie Tyson-Brown ( Bass) and Thomas Moore (Drums). Their sound comprises some varied vocal styles; coupled with a big almost multi-layered guitar sound, with the sweet six string bass. The short set features about half a dozen original songs including “Sleeping All Day”, Slow Dance”, “Velvet Cafe” (which can be downloaded here for free (; and an epic, as of yet unnamed tune to close their set featuring a really big guitar sound. I look forward with anticipation after hearing these short bursts of potentially great tunes to the band’s debut EP which is expected sometime in 2014.

Violetic 1234

The thing that I absolutely loved about “Violetic” is the time and trouble they with their small army of followers had taken in getting ready for tonight’s gig. To create just the right atmosphere some specially adapted remote controlled uplighting; coupled with strobing effects was added to the stage, as well as some white flickering Christmas tree lights winding around their set up. This was coupled with some winding ivy-like plant material weaving in and out of the instruments. With the stage set the lights go up and it is Violetic who take on this excited festive audience full of Christmas cheer. They have a big sound shaping atmospheric resonance; coupled with the uplighting really hits the spot, somewhat reminiscent of the 90’s shoegaze era with a thoroughly modern twist.

It’s not all shoegzing though, as the band delicately play through their set. They bring in other elements such as keyboards, synthesizers and all manner of computer controlled electronic sounds to create an almost cinematic soundtrack that features vocals almost as a secondary part of their music. A surprise, almost unrecognisable version of Frankie Goes To Hollywood’s number one single “Relax” gets a Violetic reworking with the crowd enthusiastically joining in on the choruses. After an intense 45 minute set the band try to leave the stage, but the drunken crowd are determined for more. Disappointingly the band have no more of their own songs and resort to a few unprepared covers which end is disaster, but hey it’s Christmas-who cares! Tonight this band have shown massive abilities in lots of areas that they have got what it takes to produce some great music and a stunningly visual live show. I am honestly really excited about what the future holds for them.

Set List
Relax (Frankie Goes To Hollywood Cover)
Sugar Skull
Merry Christmas Everybody (Slade)
Yellow (Coldplay)


Band Links

Words Videos & Pictures By Dave Chinery (Chinners).

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